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tv   All In With Chris Hayes  MSNBC  May 14, 2013 8:00pm-9:01pm PDT

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tonight, we already have the results of that investigation. i have the report here. right in my hot, little hands. and it's a stunning look at an organization and bureaucracy totally, completely overwhelmed, in the aftermath of citizens united. also, i'll tell you about angelina jolie's brave admission in "the new york times" and the spot line it shines on the high cost of affordable health care. plus, an revelation by newt gingrich that is even more jaw-dropping than when he was leading the polls in the presidential nomination. lest you not believe that today was a big news day, we begin with a rare and remarkable
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occurrence. simultaneous top-level supernews press conferences. this is our air during andrea mitchell's 1:00 p.m. show. they were simulcasting the press conference with jay carney. at the same time as the press conference with eric holder. actually, okay. here's what it would have been like. dueling press conferences. go. [ talking at same time ] that is fun. but also really important. the reason that our network carried both of the press conferences simultaneously is because everyone was waiting for both the white house and the justice department to answer questions on the blockbuster story that dropped last night. when the associated press revealed the justice department had secretly obtained two entire
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months of telephone records of reporters and editors, including incoming and outgoing calls, for both work and personal phone numbers of individual a.p. reporters, general a.p. office numbers in new york, washington and hartford, connecticut. and the main number for a.p. reporters at the u.s. house press gallery. the a.p. called the spying on reporters a massive unprecedented intrusion, for which there can be no possible justification. with a brand-new spying on reporters scandal churning around in washington, suddenly, two of the people we most likely to ask strongly-waorded about that question, were on the tv at the same time. it was almost enough to break cable news. jay carney and eric holder may have been synced up when it comes to answers about the
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strongly-worded questions about spying on the a.p. because they said essentially the same thing. they both denied knowing anything about it. really. take a listen. >> we are not involved at the white house in any decisions made in connection with ongoing criminal investigations. as those matters are handled appropriately by the justice department. >> i'm not familiar with all that went into the formulation of the subpoena. i was recused from that matter. >> i know what you're thinking -- i suspect what you're thinking because i was thinking the same thing. at first blush, that sounds ridiculous. there's a justice department scandal breaking open. and neither the white house nor the top guy at the justice department knows anything about it? it sounds not possible. i'm here to tell you it might be true. and it were to understand how it might be that neither the president nor attorney general knows anything about this big spy operation, you need to
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understand what got the big scandalous spy operation going. and this is a very interesting story. because it started in may of last year with this scoop from the a.p. that the cia had foiled an al-qaeda suicide bomb plot being planned around the anniversary of osama bin laden's death. the a.p. reported at the time the plot being orchestrated by an affiliate in yemen that involved an upgrade of the underwear bomb that failed to detonate on a jetliner over detroit on christmas day in 2009. and get this. that the fbi actually had the bomb in its possession, had managed to get its hands on the bomb and was examining it to see whether it could have passed through airport security. the a.p. did not publish this when it first had the information because the white house and cia asked them not to because intelligence operation was still underway. so, if he pulls the story and th do rert on the plot only
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after they learn the white house itself planned to release the information in a public announcement. the a.p.'s report was published one day ahead of the white house's planned announcement. now, while this all sounded like a good news kind of story, they managed to get the bomb, right? the fact the a.p. got ahold ahead of time and the cia was saying the operation was not incomplete, that got capitol hill worried. lawmakers from both parties rushed to the microphones to demand investigations, criminal charges and prosecutions in what they are now calling a leaked case. >> i've ordered a preliminary review. and this has been a damaging leak. we shouldn't underestimate what really happened here. >> the fbi has to do a complete investigation because this is really criminal in the literal sense of the word to leak out this type of sensitive, classified information on really almost unparalleled penetration of the enemy. >> the leak, i think, has to be
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prosecuted. so, the investigation is being done. hopefully it can be concluded and criminal charges will go to the department of justice. >> so, it appears the justice department looks like they followed that drumbeat, that call for investigation. investigate, they did. when eric holder said he'd recused himself this morning, that is what he meant because as someone who actually knew the information that had been leaked, he knew about this plot that ended up in the a.p. he, himself, was being investigated as a potential leaker. >> i had been interviewed by the fbi in connection with this matter and to avoid a potential appearance of a potential conflict of interest and to make sure the investigation was seen as independent, i recused myself from this matter. this matter is therefore, there after been conducted by the u.s. attorney in washington, d.c. under the supervision of the deputy attorney general. the deputy attorney general would have been the one who had
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to ultimately authorize the subpoena that went to the a.p. >> so, when eric holder said this morning he wasn't familiar with his own justice department's reasoning in secretly grabbing the personal and cell phone records of associated press reporters, he meant he wasn't familiar with that reasoning by design because this guy, the deputy attorney general, james cole, is in charge of the leak investigation. mr. cole, in fact, responded to the scathing letter today shedding at least some light on his decision making progress, an investigation, including other investigative steps over 550 interviews and reviewing tens of thousands of documents before seeking the phone records at issue. so, eric holder and 549 of his closest friends have been questioned as part of this leak's investigation, all before the deputy attorney general took to secretly seizing
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reporters' phone records for two months. the justice department is one of those agencies from which we expect a level of independence from the white house, right? we don't want to president deciding, for instance, who should and shouldn't be criminally indicted. that's a really important principle. our nation's biggest moments of abuse of presidential power have come when that separation was violated and it is possible that was the case here. and if so, it is a massive and huge scandal. but that is not what it looks like at this early stage. right now, based on what we know, what we found out today, my big question is less what did the white house know and more what the heck was james cole thinking? and is this legal? and is he really allowed to do this? joining me tonight from washington, michael isakoff nbc news national correspondent and in san diego, marjorie cohen. michael, i want to begin with you. what do we know toy that we didn't know last night in terms
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of the circumstances of this? in terms of who was doing this? and how it came about? >> first of all, we know that attorney general holder did recuse himself. we know that james cole oversaw this investigation. not the attorney general, a person that most people know about. and we know that little snippet that you read from cole's letter to the a.p., 550 interviews, tens of thousands of documents. what it suggests is they really don't know who the leaker is and not being able to find the leaker, they issued this dragnet fishing expedition subpoena for the ap covering offices where over 100 journalists work. cell phones, home phone numbers of reporters. i could be wrong. but what it sounds like is an
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act of desperation to find something they weren't able to find through standard investigative techniques. i just want to make this one point. what's distinltive about this what's distinctive angt about this subpoena, where they have gotten other examples of phone records of reporters is just how broad it is. it's not narrowly focused as the guidelines say. it is not, it doesn't seem aimed at finding a specific leak from one report, from one source to one journalist. it's let's look at everything hoping we can find something. >> and jim cole says in his letter, oh, yes. don't worry. this went by the guidelines and the a.p. wrote a response, bro, not true. check out what you told us about. there's a huge amount of information you grabbed. i want you to talk me through the law at issue here starting with just this basic question.
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before we even get to the first amendment issue. the government subpoenaed phone records from the phone company. can the government just do that when they want to see the phone records of anyone? >> well, no. i mean, they have to have probable cause to believe that a crime has been committed. and under the regulations, which harken back to the watergate days and were passed in light of watergate, it's important, it's necessary to negotiate with the reporter, to pursue less drastic alternatives than actually a subpoena. the only time that a subpoena can be issued to subpoena the phone records of a journalist is when the assistant attorney general thinks it might pose a substantial threat to the integrity of the investigation to negotiate and let the reporter know they're investigating. but the attorney general has to sign off on this. evidently, the attorney general
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recused himself. so now, the deputy attorney general has signed off on it, which may also violate the regulations. bottom line is do we trust them? but the extreme secrecy of the obama administration that we've seen violations of civil liberties, which leads to these whistleblowers and leaks to inform the public about what's happening, do we trust them to actually follow this loophole in the regulation that says that there's a substantial threat and could be a substantial threat -- >> let me translate that slowly. hold on a second. so, what we're saying is the department of justice says look, there's a kind of heightened status of first amendment operations for the press, right? you don't want to go around subpoenaing reporters' records. that poses some problems. i can't do my constitutional duty if every source i talk to is worried that the fbi is listened on the other line or getting their phone number and
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call records. so, in order to clear that bar, here's what you've got to do. you've got to go through x, y and z steps. you've got to go to the press outlet and say, hey, can we negotiate a way for us to look at some stuff? they never did that because there's a loophole as you just called it, in the regulation saying if it will threaten the investigation, then you don't have to do that. i thought it was so interesting today that even though holder was distancing himself from this, he said i recuse myself, he basically defended the decision his deputy made. take a listen to what he says about this leak and the leak investigation. >> this was a very serious leak. and a very, very serious leak. i've been a prosecutor since 1976. and i'd have to say it is within the top two -- three serious
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putting the american people at risk. and trying to determine who is responsible for that, i think required very aggressive action. >> what's your response? they say this was a really big deal. and this is what we had to do. >> everything is a big deal to the obama administration when it comes to leaks and whistleblowers. keep in mind that this administration has indicted more so-called in these leak investigations, more people than all prior administrations combined. we have bradley manning, who revealed war crimes. julian assange, who's being investigated. they would like to indict him. we have an ex-cia official serving 30 months now for giving information about the bush torture policy. and when holder decided to investigate this leak about the yemen incident in june, he also evidently, reportedly, opened investigations on two other
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matters. first of all, when mcclatchy revealed that the administration's claims that it was only targeting with the drone attacks on the basically assassinating high-level leaders that posed imminent threats, that that was false. he revealed that was false and lots of low-level people had been targeted, as well. and also, apparently, these investigating during this same time period david sanger's report "the new york times" -- >> there has been -- >> cyber attacks on the -- >> there have been a wide array -- of these investigations. michael, is there political traction for this? it's interesting to me as we look at these scandals rotating around washington. this seems to have less political traction because lots of republicans were calling for the head of whoever leaked this in the first place. >> right, but that hasn't
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stopped republicans today from saying they're concerned about what the justice department has done. holder is scheduled to talk more. i spoke with chairman goodlet this afternoon and says he has some, a lot of questions for the attorney general. he was very concerned about the broad breadth of this subpoena. the former attorney general under president bush said he had real concerns about this, there's inevitably going to be politics. but the timing of this for the obama administration was not good. coming on top of the irs scandal. >> it may get buried because washington has a real instinct for the trivial. thank you so much. >> thank you. >> we now have a full report from the treasury inspector general on the revelations that the irs targeted conservative
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an update on a story we've been following. the premature closing of the buena vista schools in saginaw, michigan, because the district ran out of money. last night, we told you about the plan to start a voluntary skills enhancement camp instead of reopening school. the source close to the controversy said the state can't backtrack fast enough on this day camp idea. now, they are working to get the schools open asap, apparently for the remainder of the year. they took a beating in the press yesterday and now realize the whole camp idea is a p.r. nightmare. yes, yes, it is, michigan. we will continue to follow the story on the show and on our website. this is for real this time.
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he had no tolerance for targeting of specific groups, conservative groups, if the reporting is true on this. >> the president did use the word if these activities have taken place. but there is an acknowledgment on the part of irs leadership, these things did indeed occur, so, i wonder why the president used that phrasing. >> what we have to do, responsively, is wait for the independent inspector general's report to be released before we assess next steps. >> that was jay carney who took a grilling from the press this
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afternoon, talking about how the president was waiting for the much talked about and anticipated treasury inspector general's report to come out before the administration decided what to do next. that's regarding the malfeasance that the staff improperly targeted conservative groups applying for tax exempt status. tonight, that report is out. it blames, quote, ineffective management for the internal revenue u service's political targets of conservative groups. it also states the irs started using inappropriate criteria to identify organizations applying for tax exception status to review indications of significant political campaign intervention. the report is also a fascinating document that lays out how the irs in the wake of the citizens united decision, has been put in the position of trying to decide who is and who is not a primarily political actor. and how the agency is left flailing to decide in a given organization qualifies
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for tax-exempt status. joining me tonight, political reporter for the "new york times" who has done some of the besteporting on m has a fantastic piece in "the times" today about the context of this. but first, all right, you and i both read this report. a long series of tweets, and it is, i mean, saying like, oh, my god, this treasury, irs inspector general report is interesting sounds ridiculous. but it is really fascinating. >> it is fascinating if you've been watching from the outside. then you have 54 pages of here's how it works. here's what happened. it's like peering into the recesses of the most secret of agency that isn't involved in intelligence work in the government. >> i want to just set the table for folks. then i want to talk about what you found in this report. the table is -- citizens united says corporations can spend out of political advertising in a campaign season. corporations aren't just exxon
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mobil.a nch of people that incorporate as 501 c4s, social welfare organizations. but are going to be getting a lot of ads in and don't have to disclose their donors. the question is, well, these things that say they're 501-c4s, and aren't necessarily political, have to go through all of this political stuff. the irs has to stay what is the standard, what do you learn about what the irs is supposed to do when faced with this genuinely difficult question. these people say they're going to be a social welfare organization. they're also clearly political. which side of the line do they fall on? >> here's the main thing i learned from this. the people in cincinnati who are charged with looking at the applications and deciding if a c4 group is going to do permissible political activity, don't themselves understand the irs rules for what is permissible activity. now, it's not totally surprising. >> literally it said in the report, we don't know.
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>> there's a bunch of accountants in cincinnati and the lawyers are in d.c. and the guys in cincinnati aren't totally sure what c4s are allowed to do. now, i'm not a lawyer. and if i'm ever writing a story about this stuff, i call like ten lawyers just to make sure i'm not making a mistake. and i still make mistakes. that appears to be what these guys did here. these guys processing these applications didn't really know what was okay and not okay. then they go and ask all these questions that are totally irrelevant to the processing of an application. who are your donors? give us a list of all the organizations you've worked with. >> your spouses. >> to a layperson, i guess it goes to what kind of political activity they're involved in, but it doesn't go to their job, which is are you doing the right thing to get tax ex -- this is a passage from the report.
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we asked the acting commissioner, tax exempt and the government entities division, the director, executive and determinations unit personnel if the criteria, when they start saying tea party, patriot. if the criteria were influenced by any organization outside the u.s., all these officials stated the criteria were not influenced. that seems to say this is not something coming top-down. this is not calls from the white house. this is something that is happening in this bureaucracy. >> we should probably say there are a couple more investigations to come. who knows what we'll find out? but according to this -- >> this is not definitive. >> right. according to this report, a couple of line employees in cincinnati decided, you know what? this will be a great way to figure out if groups are doing permissible activity.
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let's search for the ones with tea party in the name. and even worse, when the head of the entire part of the irs exempts organizations, that's crazy, you can't change it, they went around behind her back and changed it back. she didn't figure it out for three months. finally, after something like two year, came up with a consistent set of standards that was more or less compatible with irs rules, as to how to judge these things. >> and we should just put the context here. in 2010, there were about 1,700 applications for this kind of status. by 2012, it jumped a thousand. it was up to 2,774. so, they are seeing a real rising tide of these applications as the election is coming in. finally, you wrote a great piece in "the times." you said look, here's the craziest thing about this whole thing. these little groups that didn't have much money were getting really raked over the coals
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while the biggest groups, democratic strategists we all knew were doing primary politics, not a thing happened. >> that's right. we should say we're not sure because an actual audit from the irs says this is not good can take six years. karl rove's organization is 2 1/2, 3 years old, let's say. it could be five more years until we know if the irs thinks they're there or whatever. or some local county group are getting dumped on here. and they're these big groups that are in the fec records spending hundreds of millions of dollars on political campaign ads. the purest kind of election intervention we can do. it's like we all know what karl rove is up to and they're doing -- >> thank you. coming up, i'll tell you why everyone loves a scandal especially around this time of year. stay with us. people join angie's list for all kinds of reasons.
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here's today's breaking news in the benghazi scandal. scandal in quotation marks. here's the breaking news. never mind everything we've been saying for four days. no, seriously. remember the big white house talking point e-mail revelations that had the media in full-on benghazi frenzy? >> the obama administration on the defensive after nbc news obtained e-mails showing extensive et its to the disputed
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talking points issued after the attack. >> nbc's jonathan karl obtained 12 different edits to talking points that were the basis for the administration's misleading message after four americans were killed by muslim terrorists. >> we have the documents, the e-mails, this is clear. and we know now that it was a document completely ran through by the white house and state department reflecting all their objections. and the bottom line is in the end, they redacted the truth. >> that fire sound was about a set of e-mails about talking points that were shown to congressional staffers, okay? just want to make sure we're clear on this. those staffers took notes, pair parraphrased those notes
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and discussed them with a reporter. today, we have one of the e-mails. here's what he wrote. there is a ton of wrong information getting out into the public domain from congress and people who are not particularly informed. insofar as we have firmed up assessments that don't compromise intel and the investigation and need to have the capability to correct the record. we can take this up tomorrow at deputies, a meeting of deputies. the story on friday was that the white house was nefariously figuring out how to dupe the public. this e-mail shows the white house saying hey, it's really hard to know what's going on right now. there's a lot of misinformation being spread. and a lot of different agencies have a stake in what is being spread. let's all get together and see what we can agree on. now, you might ask yourself, in fact, i am asking myself why am i talking about an e-mail about a talking point? no, seriously, tell me. why am i on national television talking about this? right now, about e-mails about talking points because believe me, i don't want to be. i really don't want to be.
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and here is the answer. this chart posted by nate silver shows google searches for political news around the low end of where they've been over the last nine years. i've talked to bloggers and the incredible drop-off and even heard cable news is experiencing something similar. also found that media scandals are less likely to emerge as pressure from other news stories increases. in other words, when there's a lot going on in the news politically, scandals are unlikely. when there's not a lot of political news, well, you get the point. and nyhan adds, obama is in his second term, which is when scandals are most likely to take place. so, there you have it.
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republicans don't like the president. there's an empty news cycle. the president is in his second term. it is predetermined that reporting on an overblown scandal is what the media are going to be doing. these conditions don't excuse what the irs has done to tea party groups. these don't excuse the outrageous overreach by the d.o.j. and what they did to the a.p. both of those stories should get the media's full attention and scrutiny. that's why we've been covering them. yet, now that we are dealing with an empty news cycle, we're getting stories about e-mail talking points when there is actual news out there. you want scandalous? this is my nominee. the ruler of guatemala in the early 1980s. on friday, he was found guilty of genocide. he oversaw the slaughter of nearly 2,000 indigenous people. men, women and children. guatemalan court yesterday ordered the government to apologize for these atrocities. horrific, terrible story. of course, no one pays attention to the story of a dictator in a
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place like guatemala. unless, oh, i don't know -- >> i know that president rios is a man of great personal integrity and commitment. i know he wants to improve the quality of life for all guatemalans and to promote social justice. my administration will do all it can to support his progressive efforts. >> he's talking about a guy that tried to extinguish an indigenous people. fox, you want to take it from here? we'll be right back for click three. but don't worry, he'll find someone else. ♪ who's that lady? ♪ who's that lady? ♪ sexy lady ♪ who's that lady? [ female announcer ] used mops can grow bacteria. swiffer wetjet starts with a clean pad every time, and its antibacterial cleaner kills bacteria mops can spread around. swiffer gives cleaning a whole new meaning. ♪ lovely lady
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your chance to rise and shine. with centurylink as your trusted technology partner, you can do just that. with our visionary cloud infrastructure, global broadband network and custom communications solutions, your business is more reliable - secure - agile. and with responsive, dedicated support, we help you shine every day of the week. angelina jolie is being applauded for the admission she made today in a "new york times" op-ed. what she wrote about raises a lot of questions about women's health and whether preventative care is only available to those who can afford it. that's coming up. first, i want to share the three awesomest things on the internet today, beginning with newt gingrich's puzzle. >> we're really puzzled.
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here at gingrich productions. we spent weeks trying to figure out what do you call this? it's taking pictures, it's not a cell phone. if you can get wikipedia, that's not a cell phone. think about it. this device is something new and different. i've been calling it a hand-held computer. >> no, this is not some clever joke. the man who ran for the nation's highest office, the man who said he would challenge president obama to seven lincoln douglas style debates can't figure out what to call this device because it does so many other things. >> now, we've been here before. when we first developed the automobile, it was called the horseless carriage. and took a little while to get a new word for it. >> yes, newt, we've figured out a new word for it. the automobile. just as we have for years now called those things smartphones. for the man who seemed so tech-savvy as speaker, is acknowledging smart phone in his
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nearly three-minute portentious spiel. >> please leave a comment. what would you call this so that we could explain to people -- >> please stop it. you're killing me. also, you can use it to take pictures of your feet, fyi. a twitter fan in florida d.o.t. shortens yellow light time and doubles revenues for red light ticks. appears to be a standard local news package from wtsp 10 news tampa bay, florida. >> you won't believe what we found. proof of intentionally shortening the length of yellow lights. and that of course creates more tickets. >> state agency allowed localities to shorten the yellow light, pumping up revenue by $50 million last year. >> i never thought of such a thing. that i was doing anything wrong. >> from there, it evolved into a great seven-minute investigative piece explaining how yellow
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light times are normally calculated to the revenues and why efforts to tighten yellow light times might be failing because of that perpetual pot of gold, the lobbyists. >> why? you can thank red light camera company american camera solutions. they have donated more than $500,000 to political campaigns in florida alone and upwards of $1 million lobbying. >> check out the whole piece and drive slowly while you're in florida. and the third awesomest thing, computers may not kill us, but they'll take our jobs. the rate at which computers have been gaining on the human brain has been exponential. they will increasingly take our jobs, robots will outnumber human beings sometime in 2030s. worker displacement could be worse than before. all hope is not lost.
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preventive double mastectomy, having both of her breasts removed to minimize her risk of getting breast cancer later in life. the decision to opt for the multiple surgeries came after she underwent testing to discover she had the brca1 gene. jolie's mother died after a long battle with ovarian cancer at just the age of 56. and jolie writes about her children asking whether the disease that killed their grandmother could affect her. i've always told them not to worry, the truth is is, i carry a faulty gene. doctors told her she had an 87% risk of breast cancer and 50% risk of ovarian cancer. earlier this year, she began three months of surgeries and now faces a dramatically lower risk to just under 5%. she writes i can tell me children they don't need to fear they will lose me to breast cancer. it is reassuring they see nothing that makes them uncomfortable.
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they can see my small scars and that's it. everything else is is just mommy. same as she always was. they know that i love them and will do anything to be with them. on a personal note, i don't feel less than a woman. it's an extremely brave admission. and this type of genetic testing is amazingly expensive. but jolie hopes her op-ed will lead to more women with family history and the means to get tested. today, it is possible to find out through a blood test whether you are highly susceptible to breast and ovarian cancer and then take actions. now, most women's experiences do not make it into the "new york times." but in her decision, she is not unique. experts estimate there has been as much as a 50% rise in the surgeries in recent years, meaning more and more women armed with genetic information are making the decision to undergo major surgery now to minimize their risk of cancer later.
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when we come back, i'll speak with a journalist who found herself in the same circumstances as angelina jolie. and the congresswoman working to do something about this issue. what makes stouffer's meatloaf best of all? that moment you enjoy it at home. stouffer's. made with care, for you or your family. stouffer's. so you can capture your receipts, ink for all business purchases. and manage them online with jot, the latest app from ink. so you can spend less time doing paperwork. and more time doing paperwork.
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we're talking about angelina jolie's revelation that she underwent a preventive double mastectomy earlier this year. joining me now, caroline bass. and author of the book "how the breast cancer gene changed everything." lizzie underwent a double mastectomy at the age of 27. great to have you both here. lizzie, i want to begin with you. having gone through this, what
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was your takeaway? your reaction to it? >> first of all, i just really feel for anybody who has to make this decision, make the call to have a preventive double mastectomy, so my first reaction was sympathy. i also think that it's great. it's going to be great for women who are thinking about testing for this gene. this raises awareness about hereditary breast cancer, and it can help women to decide whether taking the gene test is right for them, of course, in consulation with their genetic counsellor or a doctor, and i really also liked about what she said about not losing her femininity. i think that's a really important message. not just for women who have had a preventive mastectomy, but for many women, that there is life after mastectomy. >> you found yourself in position, you did genetic testing, and i should be clear, i was slightly erroneous before. it was a nowtation on that gene. everyone has that gene, it's a fewmation, a fairly rare mutation.
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i just can't imagine. what goes through your head in that decision? it seems like the starkest kind of risk management for an individual to face. >> there's the decision to test and the decision about what to do about the results that you get. for me, i come from a family with a lot of cancer in it. my mother had cancer at 30. her mother had cancer in her 30s and again in her 40s and ovarian cancer in her 50s, and both of her sisters died of cancer. one quite young, in her 30s and the other survived breast cancer to die horribly of ovarian cancer. >> it was just so stark looking around your family. >> every woman on my mother's side of the family had either had her breasts taken off voluntarily or because she's had cancer. when you have that kind of odds, it really does feel like cancer's coming for you, and you have to be extra cautious. >> congresswoman, i couldn't help but note that $3,000 is the cost for just the genetic testing that would -- that
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angelina jolie underwent and that lizzie underwent. that is a lot of money. that is not something a lot of people can afford, and it's not necessarily covered by insurance. >> absolutely and let me just say to your guests, i really think she's very brave and i really appreciate her coming forward and talking about this. when i watched the news this morning, the first thing that came to my mind i have to say, i lost two maternal aunts to breast cancer, and i was like, wow, maybe i could get that test. at $3,000, that's just the screen. then you're talking about the mastectomy and then most important for women is the reconstructive surgery that comes afterwards, and i am sure that that really is a barrier, you know, in three areas. the cost of the screen, the surgery and then the reconstruction. and so to me as we move forward implementing health care reforges i really look forward to the day that all women have access to this test, to the surgery and to the
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reconstruction that happenings afterwards. >> it may be worth noting my test was not $3,000. they tested my mother first and instead of having to sequence the entire gene, they only had to look to see if my mutation was the same as her mutation. >> white women are five times more likely to undergo the counseling than african-americans. there's a massive racial disparity and it also reflected the fact that black women have a 41% higher mortality rate and there's some real equity issues around this. there is also, i mean, this to me is the most striking aspect of this. there is a single company that owns this gene. and if it sounds like i'm misspeaking, i am not. there's a single conditions even though they didn't make this gene, evolution made this gene, mira genetics have patented this gene. they have had claimed that they
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can patent this gene. a district court said that's crazy and an appeals court said that's crazy. we will find out soon. but this is really something that this technology is now in the hands of one company. >> yeah, that it's incredibly extraordinary. i'm looking forward to seeing what the supreme court decides. my understanding is what they've patented, they're arguing you can't patent things out in nature, so they haven't patented a whole string of da, just the specific cancer-causing mutations on the gene. >> and that's a real question, whether they can do this. congresswoman, this is a case i think you've been following closely. >> it is and it's a case we're following in the judiciary committee to see what the outcome will be. you know, again, you would think that something that would save lives in such a manner really should be opened up, and there should be access to everyone. you know, it's dfilt when
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you're thinking about a disease that you would hold on to a patent for "x" number of years before you provide access to the general public. it's something we should address in the long term. >> there's been a big question and you're researching this, how much are we going to see this increase over time? we've already seen a huge amount of increase. are we going to see an explosion in this kind of testing, and will we see testing in all sorts of other areas like this? >> i think so. >> i think so. we're learning more about genetic causes of disease every day is my impression. there aren't just genes for breast cancer. there are genes that can raise your risk of alzheimer's or colon cancer or -- i think what we're seeing now with brca is going to become much more widespread. i think this is part of the future of medicine, and it's complicated and uncertain and that's one of the really problematic things of genetic testing. >> so the first person experience that angelina jolie laid out very movingly today that you, yourself has
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experienced and had to act on, looking down the barrel of genetic probability is something i think a lot of us are going to be experiencing for ourselves. author and journalist lizzie stark and congresswoman karen bass. thank you so much. that's it for this evening. "the rachel mad do you show" starts right now. good evening, rachel. >> thank you very much and thanks to you at home for joining us this hour. new york city is the largest city united states. we all think of it as a sprawling mega metropolis, and because it is so big, even while you are in new york city, it's very easy to forget that where you actually are is on an island in the north atlantic. manhattan is surrounded by water. staten island, is as the name implied, surrounded by water. all the new york city boroughs have coastlines and it is possible to do some very good fishing, some north atlantic fishing in, say, brooklyn new york. i know this for a fact because i caught this fish